Sunday, May 5
Scripture: 2 Samuel 10, 1 Chronicles 20, Psalm 20, Matthew 22
Matthew 22:37–40 Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
How can I choose another verse when this one is in the daily reading? After all, it is “the first and greatest commandment,” and “all the Law and Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Love certainly includes the idea of affection, but is much larger than that alone. Love is doing what is best for another no matter what it costs you. Love is devotion to another and to their well-being. When I love you, I want what is best for you.
Applied to God, I’m to love Him with all I have: all my heart, soul, mind and strength. This means my whole self is devoted to Him. All my life is devoted to doing what is best for Him, pleasing Him, honoring Him. No matter how much I love God, I can always love Him more! This is not a cause for shame or frustration, but a challenge to keep growing. It’s part of the adventure of following Jesus. Love more!
Today, how can I love God with all I’ve got? What would please Him or honor Him in this moment?
Applied to people, I’m to love them as I love myself. Naturally, I put myself and my interests first. I look out for me. That’s how I’m to love others: to put them and their interests first, to look out for them as I would myself, to do what is best for them, no matter what it costs me. This love is selfless, active and costly.
Today, how can I love people like I love myself? What can I do to show those I’m with that I want their best? Love more!
Prayer: Lord, this is so clear and simple, but not at all easy. I find it endlessly challenging. No matter how well I do, I can always love more, love better. Help me today to live out these great commandments!